Learning and Inspiration: Top Books
Hello and welcome back to the blog! Today, we will be looking at the best books and authors for learning how to knit and getting craft inspiration.
Knit and Nibble - James McIntosh
Knit and Nibble is a great book for knitters of all abilities. Written by James McIntosh, a chef who discovered knitting after experiencing anxiety, panic attacks and depression, the book explores the benefits of knitting, explains the basics, gives tips, shares patterns and even contains recipes for sweet treats to snack on whilst doing your knitting. It also focuses on male mental health and encourages people of all genders to knit. I am yet to try any of the patterns but I have found the other tips incredibly useful and well-explained. I also made and tried a few of the snacks a couple years ago and they were all amazing, particularly the Marshmallow Delights and the Malteser Squares. Here is a photo of the book.
A Little Course In...
You can buy these books for knitting, crochet, sewing and even non-craft hobbies such as Pilates! Books in the series go through the stages of the hobby step-by-step, explaining the basics and moving on to more advanced aspects. I have not read these books myself but it was a recommendation I got from Sharon. What's more, they are widely available and affordable; you can get many of the books for under £10.00 via Amazon, eBay, The Works and other shops. Here are some photos of the knitting and crochet versions.
Sophie's Universe: Crochet-along by Dedri Strydom Uys
If you crochet and want to learn something a little more advanced, this is a great project for you! The book goes through how to make a specific blanket called Sophie's Universe, which is broken into many stages so you can make something as big or small as you like. Another good thing about it is if you are finding the instructions in the book hard, you can find many guides and videos online which go through parts of the pattern in a more visual way. Whilst it is quite complicated, it is explained in detail so you don't have to know everything about crochet before you start. Even if it is a little too advanced for you at this stage, I would recommend looking it up as the pictures of it are stunning and make me feel really inspired! Here is a photo of the book and some pictures of it made up by Sharon
Maybe these don't quite count as books, but I had to give this a mention as this is where I get a lot of my inspiration from. One of my favourite things to do in my free time is to flick through craft magazines (my favourites being Simply Knitting/Crochet and Knit/Crochet Now), cut and stick patterns onto plain sheets and add them to a folder. I already have a lot of projects on the go at the moment, but it's given me a lot of inspiration; after I've done some projects for this blog (more on that in a few weeks), I may make myself a Pusheen (a famous cartoon cat) jumper from a pattern I found in a Knit Now magazine - it looks so cute!
Craft Murder Mysteries
Yes, you read that right. It doesn't really fall into the category of books for learning or inspiration but I just had to say a bit about them. At the moment, I am reading a book called Casting Spells by Barbara Bretton, which is about a murder that happens in a supernatural town containing a yarn shop, and it's up to the yarn shop owners to resolve the crime. It's the first book in a long franchise and there are many similar series available too. So, if you're looking for an escape from the world and your hands are a little too sore to knit, why not give this genre a go? Here is a photo of the one I am currently reading.
That's all from me for today! Next time, I will be looking at social media sites and accounts that are good for learning and inspiration, but until then, happy crafting!
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My name is Sharon the Sheep, the owner of Avicraft Wool Shop in Bromley Kent..